On Patriotic Displays, Voting and Snowmen


It’s Election Day, my favorite quadrennial holiday and an excuse to post three photographs of obsessive unabashed patriotism.


I think the appropriate caption is Git’R’Done. Somehow, I don’t think this man and I will vote the same way. This truck was parked near my office when I came back from lunch last Friday. It’s a brilliant exemple of the redneckery of these here parts. Living in Vietnam last year, I discovered I actually do love America but I am less inclined to public displays of affection.


Send the armed bears to war with their horses and bayonets! I’m all for supporting the armed forces by ensuring that veterans receive the medical and psychological care they need, ending military rape and investing in the appropriate body armor but I would rather show my support by electing someone who has soldiers’ welfare at heart.

Buy this coffee, get a job. If only it were that simple…

Toward the end of September, I registered college students to vote at Ivy Tech, a community college in Columbus. A man in his mid-twenties slouched past the table on his way to the vending machines, eyeing the table.

“Are you registered to vote?” I asked.

“Naw,” he replied. “I feel disenfranchised by the system.”

He slouched away. I turned to the other woman sitting at the table with me. “I think people choose to be disenfranchised,” I fumed. “If you feel disenfranchised, get involved! It’s your responsibility to hold the government accountable.”

The man walked slowly back, Mountain Dew in hand. “So, if I registered, would I have to vote?” He asked hesitantly. “I might not have the time.”

The other woman, who has been organizing for the Democratic Party in Indiana for two decades, said, “No. But in order to vote, if you do have time, you have to register in advance. All you have to do is fill out this form.” She explained to him about absentee ballots and early voting.

“All right. I’ll register,” he acquiesced. “And I might vote…if I have time.”

Vote. Just vote. For whomever you believe is the right candidate, just vote.

At least we know who the snowmen voted for in 2008 in Wisconsin. I took this photo in Wausau, Wisc., either in late December 2008 or early January 2009.



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